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How This Single Mom Used Ribbon To Win Her Family's First Home

December 3, 2021
/ by 
Maria Bailey
How This Single Mom Used Ribbon To Win Her Family's First Home

See how single mom, Courtney Murray, beat multiple offers in the highly competitive Florida market.

Courtney Murray with Isabella, Sophia, with agent Jenna Nunez

Sitting at the Thanksgiving table in a home she can finally call her own, new homeowner Courtney Murray was struck with an overwhelming sense of gratitude. Gratitude because the prospect of even buying a home was reduced to nothing but a dwindling dream just several weeks prior. 

Before using Ribbon, the devoted single mom of two girls had endured over 30 home offer rejections over an exhausting one and half year search in Orlando, Florida. Her search — soured by a historic housing crisis marked by low inventory and record-high selling prices. It was bad news for many aspiring homebuyers — for Courtney, it made buying a home seem like an impossible feat. 

A school counselor of 17 years, she had worked tirelessly to make buying a home a reality for her family. A high debt to income ratio onset by student loans meant getting approved for a mortgage was a victory itself. Searching for a home was supposed to be the exciting part. And, it was — at first. 

Courtney and her two girls, Isabella and Sophia, were eager to find their dream home as a family. "We found three or four houses we liked — we were excited and placed our offers," Courtney explains. But, it was at that point when Courtney and her daughters realized what they were up against. 

"We made offers, and we got denied. And we got denied. And we got denied," she recalls. After an onslaught of rejections, the emotional toll was starting to become all too much. Not just for Courtney but also for her girls. 

"They would get attached to a house — saying things like, 'Oh, I want this room,' and 'I want that room,' and then I would have to tell them, 'sorry, our offer wasn't accepted,'" she recalls. "It got to the point where the girls didn't even want to go anymore."

Courtney continued house hunting on her own alongside her realtor — Jenna Nunez of Bella Trae Realty — before expanding her search outside Orlando, an hour south in Davenport. But, with each week, month, and (eventually) year that passed, her hopes of owning a home dwindled until no hope was left.

"Why am I even looking at houses when each house already has 40 plus offers on the table?" she questioned. "We already know the outcome: an investor is going to come in and offer cash. Meanwhile, I'll offer around $40,000 or more over the asking price, and for what? We all know cash offers always win." Courtney realized she was playing a losing game. 

And, the numbers speak for themselves. An analysis of county records by real estate broker and buyer Redfin Corp. found that 30% of U.S. home purchases in the first four months of 2021 were all cash — that's a 25.3% increase compared to last year. In Orlando, 32.8% of homes were purchased with all cash

It was clear Courtney desperately needed to switch up her buying strategy if she were even to have a fighting chance at winning a bid on a home. So when Courtney's realtor Jenna learned that RibbonCash Offers backs buyers with cash to win, they wasted no time signing up. 

"After signing up with Ribbon, we put down an offer on two houses, and rather than being last on the list of potential buyers, we were now at the top — all because we had cash," Courtney said. 

Still, Courtney was competing against 45 other offers when she placed a bid on a third house with Ribbon. So, when she got the call that her offer on a three-bedroom family home in Davenport was accepted, she thought her realtor was mistaken. 

"I thought there had been some kind of mix-up," Courtney said. "I'd been searching for a house for over a year and a half to no avail — we'd only been using Ribbon for a month and a half, and already, my offer on a third house was accepted— I couldn't believe it."

Courtney's only regret? Not using Ribbon sooner. "I missed out on so many houses — bigger houses, cheaper houses when the market was a little bit lower. If only I had gone with Ribbon in the beginning."

Courtney bought the house on October 15th, and by October 23rd, the family had already moved into their new home — just in time for the holidays. 

"I feel truly blessed to have celebrated Thanksgiving in our new house — the feeling was wonderful," she said. “We've already shared so many memories in our new home, and we're excited to create new memories in a house that is ours — not anyone else's."

As the first Ribbon home buyer in the state of Florida, Courtney has advice for others navigating the highly competitive housing market. "If you're struggling to win a bid on a new home, chances are you're being outbid by cash offers. That doesn't have to be the case,” Courtney advises. "I would encourage others to use Ribbon to give yourself the cash leverage. Ribbon helped us — so it can help you too."

Written by: 
Maria Bailey